You know those hazy, hot and humid days are coming; they come every year. You can’t stop them, but you can plan ahead to keep yourself as cool as possible.

It is not just a matter of comfort; prolonged exposure to the heat can kill you. To help protect your health, the Medical Society of the state of New York offers these tips, adapted from the New York City Office of Emergency Management:

  • To help prevent dehydration, always keep a supply of water on hand.
  • Help keep your home cool by installing window shades or awnings to block out the sun.
  • If you have air conditioning, make sure that it works properly before the heat wave rolls in.
  • If you do not have air conditioning, keep your windows open when possible so that fresh air may flow through your home. Also identify an air-conditioned location, such as a shopping mall, library or home of a friend or relative where you can go to find relief from the heat.
  • Have a plan with your neighbors to check in on each other during a heat wave, particularly if you or your neighbors are elderly, have young children or have special needs.

This information is provided by the Medical Society of the state of New York. For more health-related information and referrals to physicians in your community, contact your local county medical society.